Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Agnus-castus.

 Agnostic (An).Agnus Dei. 
CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
 
Agnus-castus.
 
A shrub of the Vitex tribe, called agnos (chaste) by the Greeks, because the Athenian ladies, at the feast of Cers, used to strew their couches with vitex leaves, as a palladium of chastity. The monks, mistaking agnos (chaste) for agnus (a lamb), but knowing the use made of the plant, added castus to explain its character, making it chaste-lamb. (For another similar blunder, see I.H.S.)   1
 


 Agnostic (An).Agnus Dei. 

 
Loading
Click here to shop the Bartleby Bookstore.

Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2014 Bartleby.com · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors